4 Ways to Improve Your Listening


Listening isn’t a school subject. Many people believe it is a natural skill (after all, don’t we have two ears?) and that as long as we hear critical things in our lives, we’re OK. It is estimated that 50 to 75 percent of our time is spent in listening mode, yet comprehension tests generally reveal that we aren’t remembering what we hear.

The Bible tells us to “Be still,” but how many us understand how to really listen? We’re distracted by electronic devices, circumstances and people. Listening or “being still” just doesn’t seem achievable.

What about God’s voice? Do you hear it? Do we take time to listen for Him? Can we stop the noise and clatter that’s around us so His voice comes through?

Good listening requires patience and practice. If it’s difficult for you to “be still” and hear God’s voice, these few points may help you.

  • Create an atmosphere for listening. This gives you a place that is for listening. If you have kids it may be the bathroom, but at least it’s one place where you can get away with your Bible and just listen. For me, it’s my car. I turn off my iPod and just pray and listen for God’s voice. We’ve had some good conversations that way.
  • Listen Patiently. Most people think faster than they think so we can often think ahead of all that we’re hearing. Try not to fall into that trap. Hearing God’s voice is not a drive-through experience. Sometimes it takes reading and study to completely understand what He’s saying or directing us to do. Slow down and take the time necessary to hear Him completely.
  • Be Prepared. God can speak to us when we’re anywhere or doing anything. Be on the alert for the Holy Spirit’s promptings and you’ll be blessed as you see God’s plan for your life unfolding.
  • Extend the conversation. Listening and responding to God is what he desires. He wants a deep relationship with you. So, extend the conversation through prayer, journaling, or simply reflecting on what you are reading.

Give God a reason to strike up a conversation with you. Use these four easy steps to help you open up to God’s voice and you’ll be blessed.

What is God telling you? What has he shown you?


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Trust is the winsome wedding of faith and hope.

Brennan Manning

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